Coyote Trapping Tips

Coyotes can be troublesome, especially in suburban areas where they scavenge for food. If a coyote keeps coming back to your property, it’s time to learn about coyote trapping.

Due to hunting, the coyote’s apex predator, the wolf, is low in number. For that reason, the coyote population has exploded

 Coyotes are becoming more common in suburban and even some urban areas. 

Here are a few trapping tips on how to snag coyotes.

Having the right gear

When it comes to learning how to trap coyotes, you want to make sure you have the right gear.  Coyotes love to roam in wide-open spaces. They have a superior sense of smell. You want to keep both of these factors in mind when you are trapping.

 You want something strong enough to trap, but that won’t damage the skin. You also want a trap that lays flat and is easy to disguise. 

Here are some traps we recommend:

  • Montgomery dogless coil spring traps (size 3-4)
  • Duke coil spring traps (size 3-4)

You can have coyote traps out for days, but if you don’t have traps devoid of your human scent or don’t camouflage them well, it won’t matter much. 

Related: Check out our guide to coyote hunting

How to take care of traps

You can care for your traps with two essential steps:

  • De-grease your traps
  • Rust your traps and dye them

Pro Tip: Always make sure you handle your traps with thick cotton gloves to keep the human scent off of them. 

How to boil your traps

Before you set out your traps, you want to make sure you de-grease them. Most traps come with a lot of manufacturing grease on them. You want to remove the grease to make sure your trap is void of any scents. It’s one of the surefire ways of trapping coyotes.

  • Boil water in a five-gallon metal bucket.
  • Place your traps in the bucket.
  • Let the traps sit in the bucket for 30 minutes. 

Boiling the traps removes the grease. If you notice there is still some grease after 30 minutes, simply put it back in the bucket for another five minutes.

Rust and dye your traps

It’s essential to rust and dye your traps. The rust will give the dye something to grasp onto, so it will  help camouflage into the scenery when you use brown color.

Here’s how you can rust your traps:

  • Hang your traps from a tree.
  • In the morning, spray down the traps with water and leave them to rust.
  • Once rust has collected, you are good to move on to dying your traps.

When it comes to dying your traps, we recommend using Speed Dip. We typically use brown. The brown dye will help the trap blend into the dirt when we set the trap. To use Speed Dip, you mix one quart of Speed Dip with one gallon of gasoline.

  • Dump the Speed Dip and gasoline into a large plastic container.
  • Place a long nail in your trap so that all parts of the trap can get dye on it.
  • Dip your trap into the dye for about 30 seconds (wear gloves)
  • Hang up your trap to dry (about 30 minutes).
  • If, for some reason, the trap doesn’t have a beautiful chocolate color, dip it again.

Make sure you have a few sets of thick cotton gloves to handle the traps. Wearing thick gloves will keep your scent off of them. If, for some reason, your gloves get wet, make sure to change into a new pair.

Set your trap

Now that your traps are good to go, it’s time to start setting them. You want to pick high-traffic areas where coyotes meander. 

For this reason, we recommend placing traps along the traveling and hunting routes of coyotes.

 You can find coyote tracks along thin strips of brush or timber alongside fields. They are also found around streams, rivers, and ponds.

You want to place your trap just on the edge of the trail. Most animals won’t veer off the path much but will explore along the border.

 Dig a two-inch hole or diameter that leads up to a clump of grass or a bush. It’s essential to provide only one good point of entry that leads them towards the set. The hole will mimic the way canines stash food for later and won’t appear odd to the coyote.

Next, anchor your trap about six to eight inches in front of the hole. Make sure to set it just to the left or right of the center of the hole to catch a front paw. Cover your brown trap with dirt or leaves. Covering your trap with leaves is one of the best strategies on how to trap a coyote.

Place the bait

After placing the trap, you want to fill the hole with bait and maybe a lure dab. Depending on who you ask, you can get many different answers to what makes the best bait or lure. Here are a few that we found work well:

  • Raccoon lure
  • Duck
  • Soured fat from old meat trimmings
  • Dog food

Using one of these should do the trick. If you’re closer to the city, dog food might be best since coyotes will recognize the scent. It may take time, but soon enough, you’ll have learned how to trap coyotes.

Trapping is an art

Just like with any other skill, learning to be a trapper takes time. By following these helpful tips, you’ll learn how to trap coyotes in no time.

FAQs About Coyote Trapping

What are some of the best baits for coyote trapping?

Common baits used for coyote trapping include eggs, fish, fruits and vegetables, and even chicken parts.

How can I ensure that my traps are set up safely and humanely?

When setting up traps for coyotes it is important to place them in areas where they are least likely to be disturbed by people or pets and make sure that the traps are firmly anchored and staked down properly so the animal doesn’t injure itself in the process of trying to escape from the trap.

Are there any laws or regulations governing coyote trapping in my area?

Depending on your area there may be laws or regulations governing coyote trapping which should be researched beforehand; these laws may vary from state-to-state so it’s best to check with local wildlife officials before setting any traps.

Where is the most effective place to set a trap for a coyote?

The most effective places to set a trap for a coyote are usually near water sources or along trails they often travel on; doing this increases the chances of catching one since they will likely follow familiar paths when looking for food or shelter opportunities nearby.

What methods should be used for handling and releasing trapped coyotes safely and humanely?

When handling and releasing trapped coyotes it is important not only use proper safety equipment but also handle them calmly yet firmly using two hands placed at either side of its head rather than one hand grabbing its tail or scruffing it around its neck – this method helps minimize stress levels for both parties involved during release back into natural habitats afterwards.

About the Author

Trey is a lifelong hunter and avid camper. He lives outside Denver, CO with his wife Kaci and their lab mix Ziggy. They spend as much time as possible outdoors - hunting, fishing, and camping.

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